Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights: What’s Ideal for My Home? 

Indoor air quality is something to keep in mind for every household. Without the right air quality products, indoor air is frequently two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. But with a large number of air cleaning methods to choose from, how do you determine which one is ideal for your home and family? Here’s a comparison of two popular options—air purifiers and UV lights.

How Do Air Purifiers Work?

Air purifiers are designed to improve indoor air quality by removing dust, tobacco smoke, and pollen from the air. Some also absorb odor-causing molecules for a pleasant scent. Air purifiers come in a portable form, which means they can only clean the air in one room at a time.

There are several types of air purifiers, such as mechanical filters, activated carbon filters, ozone generators, electronic air purifiers, and ionization systems. They all perform a little differently, but the goal is the same—to filter out airborne pollutants. However, once allergens settle to the floor, purifiers can no longer trap and remove them.

One common byproduct with a number of air purifiers is that they create ozone. Whether in its natural form or mixed with other chemicals, ozone can be harmful to health. Being exposed to ozone decreases lung function and enhances the risk of throat irritation, coughing, chest pain and lung inflammation. This is an ironic side effect, considering that a homeowner would only use an air purifier to improve indoor air quality, not weaken it! Based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommendations, homeowners are encouraged to take advantage of proven approaches of managing indoor air pollution. These methods include eliminating or controlling pollutant sources, increasing outdoor air ventilation and using any proven methods of air cleaning that doesn’t intensify or generate ozone.

How Do UV Lights Work?

Ultraviolet-C (UVC) rays are the highest energy portion of the UV radiation spectrum. This type of light is known as germicidal because it inactivates most viruses and wipes out bacteria and molds. UV lamps have been used as a sterilization mechanism in hospitals and food production for a very long time. When installed in your HVAC system, UV lights can drastically boost indoor air quality.

The process is surprisingly straightforward: an ultraviolet lamp is installed in your air ducts, where it runs throughout the day. Any time the air conditioner or furnace starts, indoor air containing particles blows through the light. Airborne microorganisms are deactivated within 10 seconds of contact, rendering them unable to reproduce until they die soon after UVC exposure. It is recommended that UV lights be used in addition to both high efficiency filtration and ventilation accessories. All three work in unison to provide the best, most pure indoor air for your home.

Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights – Which is Better?

Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing recommends installing UV lights for the highest possible indoor air quality. This solution can bring relief to people struggling with asthma and allergies, namely in hot, humid settings where microorganisms prosper. Unlike air purifiers, UV lights can:

    • Clean the air in your entire home
    • Eradicate most viruses, bacteria and mold
    • Enhance your HVAC system’s lifespan
    • Reduce the likelihood of producing ozone

If you decide a UV germicidal light is useful for your home, talk with one of our indoor air quality technicians today. We can walk you through the ideal combination of systems based on your HVAC equipment and indoor air quality needs. Don’t forget, you should still use an HVAC air filtration system to trap dust, pollen and pet dander since UV lights won’t affect non-living allergens. To learn more about these air cleaning methods, or to arrange a free home health consultation, call us at 866-397-3787 now!

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